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Certification of competences in selected specialist areas in small and medium enterprises

In the framework of the pilot project ESO-CSA, we elaborated a European system for the certification of competences. We developed a system which enables us to identify, assess and recognize competences in small and medium-sized companies, especially those that have been acquired through non-formal learning. This European certificate contributes to a European-wide assessment and to the recognition of professional competences.This new system uses a European-wide standardised process and confirms professional competences according to standardised requirements and procedures. We therefore defined competence areas, the content of the competences and a set of regulations for the certification. We use competence profiles that define the skills that are necessary in order to successfully deal with certain tasks in an SME. We also elaborated an assessment which is based on the EQF, thus making the certificates comparable to professional qualifications and/or diplomas. This assessment was done on the basis of the required learning times and the certificates were classified within the EQF.The project had the following results:- Specialist certificates for selected competences in SMEs- Assessment table of the certificates in order to determine the requirements- Computer-aided self assessment tool for the preparation to the certification- Creation of a European network of players and organisations that guarantee the implementation and development on a long-term basis.This project is an innovative European project introducing a European certification system for competences. It fully corresponds to the Bruges/Copenhagen Processes. In 2006, the project was the only German project to receive the Helsinki Award.



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